Yesterday, we asked about when it might make sense to go brand-less, and whether doing so can be an effective marketing strategy long term.
Today, I’m wondering, what and where would McDonalds be without the Golden Arches? Nike without the Swoosh? Shell Oil without the, well, Shell?
Laura Savard and Mark Gallagher of BlackCoffee stirred up an interesting conversation on the brewing question of whether Logos Are Dead? They say no, and I tend to agree. Here is how they explain the critical role of logos:
As brand signals, logos are visual icons providing two basic, yet necessary functions for brands: identification (a marker for finding a specific offering) and differentiation (how to tell that offering apart from others). Over time, they directly equate to their given brands. Whether you view them from a distance, or out of the corner of your eye, you equate these visual icons with the brands they represent. For this same reason, when driving in another country, you understand that a red octagonal sign means STOP, even if you don’t speak the language.
As I have written before, logos may be without words, but they certainly are not speechless. It seems to me, as a consumer and a trademark type, when it is capable of standing alone, a logo packs lots of information in a very efficient manner and carries enormous branding power and value.
In addition, from a legal perspective, there certainly are the pros and cons of stand-alone non-verbal logos vs. other trademark styles, but I’m more interested in hearing what others think.
So, what do you think, when do stand-alone logos make sense?
When does it make good sense to go without?